Wednesday, May 11, 2005

Best Quote I Heard All Day
Imagine if every Thursday your shoes exploded if you tied them the usual way. This happens to us all the time with computers, and nobody thinks of complaining. --Jeff Raskin

I'm complaining. The expensive Dell laptop has fried itself. The hard drive is no more. It has ceased to be. It has gone to meet its Maker. It's shuffled off its mortal coil, run down the curtain and joined the bleedin' choir invisible!! This is an EX-HARD DRIVE.

So I'm working on my old IBM Thinkpad down in the rec room, which is slow but at least functioning.

Road Trip
Mammy and I went off to our local yarn shop yesterday for a boredom buster. She was looking to buy some Spring Garden, I needed markers.

I like to patronize yarn shops, even though I occasionally order online. Selling yarn is a tough business and I really prefer handing over my ducats to a live person who I know. Besides, there's always the gossip, the fiber handling, plus the yarn shop owner frequently has access to info that you might not see online. For example, yesterday I saw the preview pictures of the forthcoming Simply Shetland book.

I have to say, based on a quick scan of the pictures, that the new SS is nowhere as good as the previous editions. There is one beautiful Fair Isle and another one done in unfortunate baby-blue shades. A nice men's cabled sweater. The rest of the garments were totally forgettable. I'll buy it, simply because I have the others and I did like the Fair Isle.

Interesting to find out that the owner thinks the frou-frou scarf craze is dying out, at least around here. She's not selling the same quantities of crap that she had been.

The Summer Mags
All lousy. That's my take. Not worth dissecting. Or buying, although I did buy IK because I like the layout and the articles, usually. And I don't generally knit cotton either. However, a nice pima is always OK.

Up in Flames
Thanks to reader Cynthia9292 for the info on the recall of Fizz and Fur Out due to flammability(see previous entry's Comments). When you think about it, all synthetics are fire hazards. All the more reason to knit kids' sweaters and blankies in superwash wool rather than acrylic. Plastic melts, you know?

Thanks to everyone for their suggestions. I've written down what looks appealing and I'll be off to the library.

Slainte, Part II
Well, still no camera. However, my rare and handy daughter Corinne managed to win herself a Canon digital camera yesterday in a contest on Z100. That kid wins more shit--concert tickets, ski trip. Sheesh. So no pictures until Liz is finished her science fair project. However, I now have the motif placements and stitch count done, so I'm close to starting. Much scribbling on paper and going back and forth between different motifs. It's a matter of choosing motifs that will compliment each other, whose row counts work together, and that will be the right width.

I like to choose motifs where the action happens in concert. For example, I start with the main motif, which is 24 rows. I then pick other motifs whose row counts are factors of 24 i.e., 12, 8, 6, 4, 3, 2. When knitting, this makes it a bit easier to keep track with one row counter. Of course, sometimes this isn't possible, particularly if I like a motif whose row count doesn't fit but is harmonious. Really, designing an Aran is like conducting a symphony.

So now that I have my medium-size markers (all I had were small, believe it or not), I'm ready to go.

And the weather is so rare and handy, I believe I'll be out on the deck shortly.

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